Kitchen Soup in Athens (part of the web documentary Democracy Game Over-in progress)
During the summer of 2011 Athenians went on the streets and occupied Syntagma square for almost three months. They wanted to protest against the agreements that were signed on the austerity measures but soon they discovered that their quest was directed against the political system and the way Greek society is living with it. The slogan was “Amesi Dimocratia” meaning “Direct Democracy”.
Within the two months of the occupation of Syntagma Square, the occupants formed different working groups to assure food, security, medical help, entertainment/art creation and communication.
The Syntagma movement unveiled the need of Greek society to restructure the social bonds between the people within the urban environment.
Several months later, in autumn 2011 while the political situation in Greece has been stabilized in a precarious way but without giving any solution in a social level, some of these groups, formed during the summer, start social action.
Solidarity groups, associations and neighborhood committees are formed to collect food, clothes, books and medicine or “time banks” (exchange of services ) for the “new poor” Athenians, are organized. We observe a mutation of the protest character of these groups, a passage from Syntagma square (Syntagma meaning Constitution in greek, a place that became a symbol of protest against the political system) to the neighborhoods and residential areas, to positive and concrete social action.
Kostas, was unemployed for 3 years already in 2011. He has organized the collective kitchen “o allos anthropos” (“the other person”). The kitchen soup has been functioning ever since!